We continually hear that we can not earn salvation, it is given to us by the grace of God. The Bible tells us that it is not by works of our own. We do need to be extremely careful that we do not take for granted God’s grace. We need to be careful that we do not lapse into a false sense of security. God demands perfection, then the Bible tells us: “No one is perfect, no not one.” (Romans 3:10) Too often we feel if we believe in God and are “good”; then our loving Father will certainly “save” us. Isn’t that what Jesus and the Bible teaches us? Actually, no.
2 Corinthians 13:5 New International Version (NIV); “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test?”
Maybe you should ask yourself a few questions. Do you live the message of God as well as talking and sharing the message? Do you speak the actual name of Jesus as you share with others? Do you have an effective prayer life? Do you actually talk to God and listen? Are you just too busy for God and regular Bible study? Do you truly look to scripture to determine right from wrong? You can be a luke warm Christian without being “on fire” for Jesus. Jesus tells us how He feels about these type of people.
Revelation 3:15-16 The Message (MSG); “I know you inside and out, and find little to My liking. You’re not cold, you’re not hot—far better to be either cold or hot! You’re stale. You’re stagnant. You make Me want to vomit.”
Those are some pretty harsh words from our Savior. There is nothing wrong with a Christian wanting nice things, but where do you place that priority? Do you buy “stuff”, pay club fees, etc., before financially supporting God’s work? Do you get your identity from your “stuff” or from your walk with God? When you use the word Christian, it should mean to be Christ like. Are you Christ-like? Do you know what being Christ-like means?
1 John 2:6 New International Version (NIV); “Whoever claims to live in Jesus must live as Jesus did.”
Luke 6:46 New International Version (NIV); “Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?”
It is sad when people think that going to church, professing to be a Christian, giving to the needy, giving to the work of the church, or being good, qualifies them for salvation. Jesus addressed that very clearly:
Matthew 7:22-23 New International Version (NIV); “Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name and in Your name drive out demons and in Your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from Me, you evildoers!”
The Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy warning him of what people were to become. Some of these same people claimed to be “Christian”. Perhaps each of us should study this message and see where we, ourselves, fit in.
2 Timothy 3:1-5 Contemporary English Version (CEV); “You can be certain that in the last days there will be some very hard times. People will love only themselves and money. They will be proud, stuck-up, rude, and disobedient to their parents. They will also be ungrateful, godless, heartless, and hateful. Their words will be cruel, and they will have no self-control or pity. These people will hate everything that is good. They will be sneaky, reckless, and puffed up with pride. Instead of loving God, they will love pleasure. Even though they will make a show of being religious, their religion won’t be real.”
Bill Davis